Leading Off

Tomsula’s hire by 49ers will be York’s legacy

This, that and the other thing:

▪ Jim Tomsula being named coach of the 49ers could be the franchise’s biggest success since Jed York’s uncle, Eddie DeBartolo, hired Bill Walsh in 1979. Or it could be the biggest exploding cigar since York’s father, John, fired Steve Mariucci (four postseasons in six seasons) after the 2003 season and hired Dennis Erickson, who lost more games (23 of 32, .281) in just two seasons than any coach in 49ers history.

▪ As important as it was for the 49ers to hire the right coach, it will be as critical – if not more – to hire an offensive coordinator who can return Colin Kaepernick to the bicep-kissing, touchdown-throwing and -running quarterback he was in 2013 and to hire a defensive coordinator who can build on the success Vic Fangio established.

▪ Jim Harbaugh has never finished in last place as a player or coach, so it must have reached the point in Santa Clara where York and general manager Trent Baalke hated to come to work in the morning because Harbaugh was waiting. How bad could it have gotten for them not to put up with a coach who took them to three consecutive NFC Championship games and one Super Bowl?

▪ York and Baalke are looking forward to working with – instead of against – their new coach, who has often been described by players, coaches and management as a “nice guy.” But what’s that old saying? “Nice guys finish last.”

▪ After keeping out of the search for a new coach in 2012, Raiders owner Mark Davis pulled the trigger this time in hiring Jack Del Rio, who apparently wasn’t general manager Reggie McKenzie’s top choice.

▪ After being wrong more times than right in his short tenure with the Raiders, McKenzie may no longer have the lone vote in any matter. He was wrong about hiring Dennis Allen as head coach two years ago, made the mistake of trading veteran quarterback Carson Palmer after the 2012 season and brought in two free-agent starting quarterbacks – in back-to-back offseasons – who eventually weren’t good enough to beat their backup. Perhaps Davis is now understanding why his late father, Al, never had the need for a general manager.

– Victor Contreras

vcontreras@sacbee.com


What to watch

NBA, Kings vs. Heat,

7 p.m., CSNCA: Miami looks for its third win in the final stop of its five-game trip.


Twitter chatter

@PSchrags (P. Schrager, FoxSports.com): “Justin Smith once told a scrum of reporters that Jim Tomsula was the best coach he’d had in 14 years playing in the NFL.”


On this date

1972: The Cowboys set a Super Bowl record with 252 rushing yards in a 24-3 win over Miami.

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